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Lure Review

The ABT Banshee Screams for Attention (continued)

Retrieving: Once in the water the Banshee can be retrieved at varying speeds and depths allowing it to be worked as a shallow water swimbait or even like a jerkbait. Plainly put this lure “screams” for attention at low speed retrieves where it slinks back and forth tantalizingly like a underwater snake, and during high speed burns where is comes back to the boat with a very aggressive tail whipping action.

The Banshee is quite lightweight due to the very thin overall profile

Clear, stained, or even murky water are all fishable with this lure as the Banshee puts out so much movement and flash that it garners plenty of attention, and is a great lure to use during a reaction bite. Throughout the tests bass would follow the lure and commit the minute we accelerated or jerked the bait forward. While effective for bass this lure proved excellent for Striped Bass, and the colors with more white and blue in them were absolutely deadly in both shallow water and mid way through the water column. The ability to count down and allow the Banshee to drop to desired depths made this lure very effective and there were times we could see multiple Stripers give chase in an effort to compete for the bait.

The Banshee can be retrieved at various speeds and we got a lot of our strikes when ripping the bait or fishing it like a jerkbait

Durability: ABT also wanted to make the lures more durable, and while some other hard swimbait manufacturers around this price range use plastic to attach the jointed sections of their lures ABT employs rugged steel connectors. 

The four segments are connected with stainless steel hardware


During our tests Stripers were able to bend the hooks but we didn’t have any of our test baits break apart. Some swimbaits make use of a soft replaceable tail which can be a pain to deal with over time and the Banshee eliminates the need for additional maintenance with a rigid molded tail that is painted in the same pattern as the rest of the lure, making the transition between segments more natural looking.


No replaceable soft tail on this bait, the Banshee features a hard tail that matches the finish

Price and Applications: ABT will likely sell the bulk of the Banshee lures in the smaller two sizes which retail for only $10.99 and $12.99 respectively, not only are these a great value but they are good for targeting largemouth and stripers. Those anglers interested in only targeting larger fish can opt for the 8” version which retails for $17.99 but we really think the sweet spot is the 6 inch version and were able to catch just as quality fish with the mid-sized bait.

The second treble hook is cleverly attached below the rear fin


This swimbait is very aggressively priced and anglers don’t have to stress about losing them nearly as much as the custom built swimbaits that can cost many times more. The Banshee also offers a lot of flexibility to anglers as it can be fished at any speed or depth, can be trolled at the surface, or even downrigged effectively.


Ratings: (We've re-calibrated our ratings standard for 2008 and have included a key at the bottom of the following matrix as a guide):

ABT Lures Banshee Swimbait Ratings (?/10)

Construction/Quality The Banshee is well built and makes use of stainless steel components in the joints and there is no soft tail to switch out. The finishes look very good but the lure does exhibit a mass produced feel, still the Blue Back Herring and Threadfin Shad patterns look absolutely fantastic 8
Performance This is not the easiest swimbait to cast and the lightweight thinner design can cause the lure to catch the air and flip around, the light overall weight of the smaller sizes also makes this bait a bit too light for traditional swimbait rods. Once in the water the lure garners a lot of attention drawing followers and strikes. It is effective for bass and a great choice for targeting Stripers 8
Price The Banshee costs the same as some jerkbaits, and kudos to the company for delivering a realistic looking four segment bait at a "great" price 8.5
Features The multi-jointed design delivers exceptional motion and flash and the image transfer patterns can fool both fish and fishermen 8
Design (Ergonomics) Though casting is a bit of an issue and this bait is light for traditional swimbait rods one side-effect is that this bait can be fished with traditional casting rods quite easily. The Banshee doesn't have much of a learning curve during the retrieve and is effective at multiple depths and retrieve speeds giving it a "good" rating in this category 7
Application The two smaller sizes are great for fishing for numbers while the 8" version is good for culling for bigger fish or trophy Stripers. Though good for standard retrieves or ripping this is also an excellent lure for trolling and holds up well even when targeting bigger fish 8

Total Score

Ratings Key: 1 = terrible : 2 = poor : 3 = lacking : 4 = sub par : 5 = mediocre : 6 = fair : 7 = good : 8 = great : 9 = excellent : 10 = unbelievable!
For More Details of the updated rating system visit our explanation here


Pluses and Minuses:

                 Plus                                    Minus

+ Able to target multiple depths effectively, even trolled - Smaller sizes are not the easiest swimbaits to cast long distances
+ Can be fished both fast and slow  
+ Realistic finishes  
+ Great for targeting Stripers  
+ A very reasonable price  


Conclusion: Allan knows how to build swimbaits and his designs deliver both a function and value. There are a lot of expensive handmade swimbaits on the market, the Banshee is designed to be accessible to all anglers, and because it can be fished with lighter gear it doesn't require a traditional heavy swimbait rod. The Banshee's finishes are well implemented but the real magic with this bait is once the lure is in the water and the lure undulates back and forth like a snake back to the boat. It may not be the easiest swimbait to cast but it is among the easiest to retrieve. Cranked in slow, fast, or jerked and paused the Banshee puts out a serious amount of flash in the water.


The Banshee garners plenty of attention from both bass and stripers and is a good lure to use when the fish are on a reaction bite


Screaming for attention the Banshee gets tailed by bass and its thrilling to see Stripers compete with one another to destroy this fleeing bait. It is a good thing that the Banshee makes use of steel components in the hinges because this is a great lure to target Stripers and the ability to fish it quickly throughout the water column makes it twice as deadly.


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